Confessions of a (Former) LeBron James Hater

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LeBron James has long been a polarizing athlete to be a fan of. It seems like James “witnesses” are all-in on him, regardless of which uniform he dons, while the rest of the fans fall into the “hater” category. I would be the first to admit that for the longest time, I have fallen into the latter category. This was mostly due to “The Decision,” as well as being heart-broken by his antics against my beloved hometown team, the Washington Wizards.

However, witnessing what James has been able to accomplish this postseason is nothing short of miraculous, as he has carried the Cleveland Cavaliers to heights many thought were not possible this season. Rewind to this season’s trade deadline, and Cleveland was  shipping almost all of their core veterans, including Dwayne Wade and Isaiah Thomas, to wherever a team would accept them in return. It would have been easy for the Cavaliers and James to just accept this season as a lost cause, however, losing never sat well with King James, and he has switched to a gear reminiscent of his championship winning Miami Heat days.

A recent look at LeBron James’ performance against the Toronto Raptors has Drake and other Raptors fans wishing he eventually leaves the Eastern Conference sooner rather than later. King James is averaging over 35 points per game against Toronto, which is an absurd amount to average to begin with, much less against the top-seeded team in the conference.

All of this takes me to my main purpose of the article, which is to confess that even James’ most ferocious haters have to be in utter awe of what he has done this postseason. He has won me over by not letting the distraction of his impending free agency (again) alter his approach to the game, as we are all witnessing first-hand the most dominant version of James we have seen in quite some time. The support cast around has been much different than in years past where he has been able to count on All-Stars such as Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love to pick up the slack when he has an off game.  You would be hard-pressed to find a moment in the 2018 NBA playoffs where LeBron has not elevated his game, not to mention the level of his teammates, due to his killer instinct this postseason.

With that being said, it’s time for me to apologize for all the hate I have spread in the direction of LeBron James, and just enjoy the rest of this miraculous postseason run he is putting the Cavaliers through. The comparisons to Michael Jordan will surely come up again, yet it would only distract from the overall body of work that James is piecing together this season with a relatively young roster. Time will tell if the Boston Celtics have enough to stop his run when they likely meet in the Eastern Conference Finals.

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